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Reading thread

Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by rjbman, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. noob in 89

    noob in 89 Senior member

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    Screw that, Pessoa wrote a travel guide?

    EDIT: Holy shit, he did!

    (Is this worth reading? Or is it, like, an *actual travel guide*?)


    EDIT: I'm reading DeLillo's book of short stories right now. Some of them are really good. One of them is set in space!
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2014
  2. Fuuma

    Fuuma Senior member

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    If you had read better books you'd question the truth of what is "obvious" when it is stated with no real substance. Go read The Brothers Karamazov or something.
     
  3. ManofKent

    ManofKent Senior member

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    Forever War is superb - the only other Haldeman I've read is The Hemingway Hoax which I found a little disappointing.

    Currently reading The Great North Road by Peter F Hamilton which is restoring my faith in him as a writer having read the dreadful Misspent Youth recently.
     
  4. Teger

    Teger Senior member

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    Forever Peace has been ok so far. It won both the Hugo and the Nebula but I have a feeling that that was as much for the Forever War as it was for the book itself.
     
  5. noob in 89

    noob in 89 Senior member

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    [​IMG]

    Yo. You guys. Google this. Buy this. You will thank me.

    Ostensibly a cookbook, this manual -- about how survive the food shortages of WWII -- reads more like an experimental novel, a sublime work of negative space that carves, from its absences, a world of hunger and privation, madness and defeat. What remains is some bleakly practical, but highly inventive, advice, wrapped in astounding prose, delivered with deadpan wit. (One of the chapters, about forging a paste made of stolen and rotting foods, is called 'How to Stay Alive').

    I found this in a dollar bin. It fucking rocks.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  6. LonerMatt

    LonerMatt Senior member

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    29. The Complete Collection of Flannery O'Connor

    All 31 of Flannery O'Connor's short stories were contained in this completely lengthy and drawn out volume. There were two that I thought were really something: The Germanium (her first) and "the Displaced person", they were humanistic, interesting, concise and engaging. Many of her other stories dragged on in an arc of vague nothingness that gave me nothing as a reader.

    I have no idea why she was proclaimed such a talent, and even the famous 'A Good Man is Hard to Find' was fairly dull. Mostly I found her stories to lack much meaning or conviction (I kept thinking, why did you write this? What am I supposed to be getting from it?), so perhaps the flaw is mine.

    If you're curious, try the two stories listed above. I wouldn't bother with the rest, instantly forgettable.
     
  7. LonerMatt

    LonerMatt Senior member

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    32. The Glass Canoe

    David Ireland's novel is set in the dying days of a local pub in the mid-late 1960s. The narrator and main protagonist, Meat, is an odd man. Part drunk, philosopher and lover, the chapters of this novel don't so much follow a narrative as much as they detail the lives of those that are regulars at the Southern Cross - the local pub. Brawls, affairs, escapades, football and beer feature heavily in this story, but it is so much more. In chronicling the lives of the drunkards that regular the Southern Cross, David Ireland creates a book that's incredibly touching and heart-warming, and manages to make the incredibly intoxicated and violent pub seem almost charming.

    Passages are incredibly eloquent and the prose is colloquial, but moving. It's balanced, and has enough momentum to keep up the relatively inconclusive and fragile pace. While I thought it was a touch long, this is a relatively minor consideration.

    Some of my favourite parts:

    "Why is it the weak man will look down on those who tolerate him, and up to those who keep him down? I've never worked it out. When something like this strikes me and I wonder about it, I feel I've found a key and I'm holding it in my hand, but I don't know what it opens."

    "Thinking about her in the car I knew the human race would survive. The grog wouldn't touch us, pollution wouldn't kill us, war wouldn't wipe us out. Doom didn't belong in the same world as my darling."

    I highly recommend this book - I'm sure GF or CD have already read it (published in the 70s in Australia), but it's a pretty insightful read, quite complimentary to Shadowboxing.
     
  8. wogbog

    wogbog Senior member

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    I'm reading Infinite Jest and DT Max's DFW bio because total immersion. IJ is really something. Every scene just gets me all excitable about life and literature over and over again.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2014
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  9. eluther

    eluther Senior member

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    Picked this up based on your recommendation and am only ~60 pages into it. Really really enjoy it, but your description of it suffers from hyperbole. I've yet to reel from the epiphany that people living during periods of rationing in America suffered "hunger and privation, madness and defeat." It's not Journey to the End of the Night with a recipe every two or three pages.
     
  10. noob in 89

    noob in 89 Senior member

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    I am so, so sorry. In their need for balance, my sentences do sometimes pull away from me. Often, this leads to hyperbole. :embar:

    As penance, please recommend a book -- any book -- you feel someone absolutely must read before they die, and I will buy and read it, post haste. :D
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2014
  11. eluther

    eluther Senior member

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    hah – I empathize with getting carried away. Just wanted to warn others who are maybe less "forgiving" of taking liberties with the feeling of someone's writing. A very solid recommendation, though. Did you see she wrote another book titled Consider the Oyster? Feel as if it must be Consider the Lobster's title's inspiration. Her writing definitely harkens to postmodernism – like you said, an experimental novel nested in a "cookbook." Most of the book consists of tangents that only eventually remind her of what she's "actually" writing about. Seems very much like a kindred spirit to DFW.

    Not as penance, but for the edification of your personhood, I implore you to read Heart of Darkness. And if you've already read it, re-read it. Or if you've re-read it, re-read it again. Of if you just can't stomach it again, read the criticisms in a Norton edition. Something to keep it near you for a little while.
     
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  12. noob in 89

    noob in 89 Senior member

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    Sweet. Thanks, I read it in high school (I don't know where you're from; everyone had to read it here) which surely dampened the experience. I'll definitely find one with a more inspiring/less institutional cover and read it this week. :slayer:

    I was looking at Fisher's other books on Amazon, but I missed Consider the Oyster. !!!!! That is -- that is awesome. Potentially huge, from a nerding-out standpoint, I'd think. And probably very likely. Wallace read every Updike book, I know (and probably really looked up to him, despite the very affected PC stance he adopted), and it looks like Updike was one of her champions, so.... that doesn't seem like much of a stretch. That is so wacky.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  13. wogbog

    wogbog Senior member

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    I love food and postmodernism. She sounds like an author for me.
     
  14. thewho13

    thewho13 Senior member

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    This thread is honestly p great.
     
    2 people like this.
  15. steveoffice

    steveoffice Senior member

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  16. eluther

    eluther Senior member

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    OK – one last post and I'll stop. Just to make my position more clear and buffer your expectation: it's not really postmodern, but it is really well done and fascinating as a historic document. Reminds me a lot of "The Lost Generation." Definitely more wry/deadpan than a lot of that, though – more Larry David and less The Great Gatsby.

    The edition of the book I have (which I can only assume is the only one in print) also has Fisher's own editorial comments inline. Definitely adds a lot – almost a Calvino (or Borges) -esque convention. But knowing that it's a food writer's sarcasm and not something done for an attempt at playing at intertextuality makes it more authentic (naturally?).

    That being said, I'm sure you'd enjoy it.
     
    2 people like this.
  17. noob in 89

    noob in 89 Senior member

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    So...what did you think?



    *I got the Heart of D on the way, in the most non-school-y version I could find. :D



    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2014
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  18. Portland Dry Goods

    Portland Dry Goods Senior member

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    [​IMG]

    I don't know why it's taken me this long to dip into H. G. Wells. I had a half cocked idea to work my way through his whole biography but it's looking like a friendlier investment to start with some classics. I've picked up this and The Time Machine, eyeing "Men Like Gods". any reccomendations?
     
    1 person likes this.
  19. accordion

    accordion Senior member

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    Anyone picking up In the Light of What We Know by Zia Haider Rahman?
     
  20. LonerMatt

    LonerMatt Senior member

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    Great book, much enjoyment gained from this one. War of the Worlds is obviously a must read.
     

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